Photo talk: Pulitzer-prize winning journalist shares photos, stories with campers

Story by junior journalists  Marcie Buescher, Mae Brent, Katie Irish, Iris Rycenga, Noah Lodes, Kathryn Clark, Hunter Farish, Anderson Take, Therese Schuster, Diego Dugue de Estrada, Raphel Maurice and Michael Cook with help from ECHO guides Ashli Wagner, Riley Mullgardt, Colin Shue, Aerin Johnson, Deandre Scott, Keillyn Johnson, Trinity Madison and Greg Frazier.

Pulitzer-prize winner Robert Cohen shares photos and experiences with campers at the ECHO Journalism Camp on July 2.  Photo by Therese Schuster

Pulitzer prize winning photographer Robert Cohen shared photos, stories and advice with junior journalists at the ECHO’s summer journalism camp on July 12.

Cohen started his professional career 30 years ago in photography. Cohen has worked on the St. Louis Post Dispatch for 18 years.

“I like to capture emotion more than anything else,” Cohen said.

Cohen looks for emotions when taking photos. He believes it doesn’t matter if your story is posted first as long as it’s true and emotionally powerful.

“My favorite kind of picture is the kind that tells its own story,” Cohen said.

Cohen and his team from the Post Dispatch worked on the Ferguson protests for four months and won a Pulitzer Prize.

“Photography is really neat because you get to go all around the world,” Cohen said.

Cohen’s gone to Bosnia and Croatia to cover humanitarian groups as a part of his job.

Cohen first started working for a veterinarian where he cleaned out the animal’s cages, but Cohen’s second job was at a camera shop where he was allowed to buy cameras at a discounted price. Afterwards he went to the University of Texas Austin.

Cohen lives in Webster Groves with his wife and two children,

Despite having a family waiting at home for him, Cohen’s willing to take risks in order to portray the truth through photograph.

Cohen spent eight months documenting the lives of homeless people in St. Charles, which led to awareness, and many churches donated to those families in need.

Cohen said he is constantly under a lot of stress. He works with writers in order to find pictures to match news stories. He always carries two cameras and sometimes uses his phone to take pictures.

“You’ve got to live, eat and breath journalism in order to make it,” Cohen advised.


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